Toshizou Hijikata, co-captain of the Shinsengumi

Image source

I enjoyed the first two seasons of Hakuouki, a series based on an otome game about the Shinsengumi (a group of samurai in the Bakumatsu period, about the same time as the American Civil War). In addition to the two seasons of the TV series, an OVA series is being released with side stories. As I watched the first episode, I realized that once again the OP is a rather nice song by Aika Yoshioka. Aika has sung the OP for all three components of the animated series (as well as the various OP for the games) and I have linked to the OPs for seasons one and two in the past, but now that the new OP is out, I thought I would collect all three anime OP here so those interested can enjoy them.

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Hakuouki 18 – carnage

November 24, 2010

Really nice texture on the hills in the upper-left.

Bad things happen. The story of the Shinsengumi could never have ended in triumph. Bad things had to happen. Well, bad things happen in episode 18 of Hakuouki Hekketsu-Rokku). I won’t discuss the tragic events. Instead my remarks are directed towards the artwork. When the first season began, there were some who doubted Studio DEEN would follow through, and that quality would drop late in the (first) season. My experience is just the opposite. I believe the consistency has been improved in the second season, so what had been a handful of really striking images per episode, are now more the norm.
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Hakuouki 17 – Yamato spirit

November 13, 2010

Hijikata leads the attack on Utsunomiya Castle.

Episode 17 of Hakuouki primarily relates the events surrounding the unsuccessful attack on Utsunomiya Castle. The Shinsengumi are breaking up, but Hijikata vows to struggle on for the sake of his men. Unfortunately he bears not only responsibility for the remaining Shinsengumi, but also the curse of rasetsu, and the enmity of Chikage.

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Their boss is the Green Pheasant.

This post contains remarks about Yakuza, manga authors, and the Shinsengumi. Arakawa under the Bridge^2 episode 5, Bakuman episode 6, and Hakuouki Hekketsu-Roku episode 16.

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Heisuke pounds a few bottles.

Hakuouki episode 15 (Hakuouki Hekketsu-Roku) principally covers the Shinsengumi escape from the Rasetsu warriors created by Koudou, and Chizuru’s further discoveries about the secrets of the Yukimura clan. We also say good-bye to more Shinsengumi members.

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Hakuouki Hekketsu-Roku 14 is probably the best episode produced for the series yet (in either season). Essentially the situation for the pro-shogun forces, led by the Shinsengumi, is plunged into worse and worse situations right up until the final scene. There were several remarkable action sequences, some pathos, and even a shocking conclusion. Since this episode was awesome, it includes an unusually large number of screen captures.

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The Shinsengumi are back - with new uniforms.

 

Season two of Hakuouki (Hakuouki Hekketsu-Roku) has begun. I’ll follow the convention of numbering the episodes as continuous to season 1, hence this first episode is episode 13. Being the first episode of the new season, this was mostly a setting things up episode.
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